Can I Handle a DWI Case by Myself? What Will Happen in Court? Do I really need a lawyer for DUI
Given the consequences of Impaired Driving in North Carolina, you should take the charges seriously. The State will be – John Fanney
What Can Happen in Court?
DWI cases in North Carolina can be serious, especially since the consequences for even a first offense involve fines, Costs of Court, and Community Service Fees.
Sometimes people refer to Impaired Driving as DUI or DWI. For the most part DUI or Driving Under the Influence refers to Alcohol. DWI or Driving While Impaired is intended to be a more broad description of operating a vehicle subject to an impairing substance. Impairing substances include both legal and illegal substances.
For example, even if lawfully prescribed, certain medications may impair the ability to operate a vehicle on the streets or “public vehicular areas” of North Carolina.
Therefore, lawful possession of certain controlled substances, coupled with driving, can result in a conviction for DWI. As you can likely tell, it’s complicated.
What Does a Lawyer Need to Know?
As lawyers, we ask a lot of questions to figure out what is going on.
We’re not trying to pry or embarrass you. We want to provide helpful information and that requires some research into the specifics of any case.
To start, we often need to know:
- Is this your first DWI?
- Have you been CONVICTED of another DWI within the last 7 years?
- If you have a prior history, where did the cases take place?
- Were they all in North Carolina?
- Were you involved in an Accident?
- Was anyone hurt?
- Did you have any kids in the car with you?
- Were any of them under the age of 18?
- Did you possess a valid license?
- If your license was suspended, why was it suspended?
- How long had it been suspended?
- Did you submit to testing?
- Did you give a sample voluntarily?
- Were you marked as a Refusal?
- Did Police get a warrant for your Blood?
- Were you arrested?
- What citations were issued?
- Where were you charged, what county?
- Did they take your license?
- Did they seize your vehicle?
- What did you blow?
- When were you charged?
- Did you post bond?
- How long did it take you to get out of jail if you were arrested?
After we ask these and many other questions, we will be able to tell you what we think. We will share the best and worst case scenarios – John Fanney
Modified Transcript of “Do I really need a lawyer for DUI” for the Hearing Impaired
Hi. I’m John Fanney with Fanney Law Office.
What I’m doing today is just answering questions that people pose on the internet about various legal issues. These aren’t from our clients. These are folks just like you who are out looking for legal representation, and trying to get some information on their cases.
Here goes our first question. I was charged with a DWI. I feel like I’m guilty because I was drinking and driving. Do I really need to hire a lawyer? Do I really need a lawyer for DUI?
What I would say is, in Raleigh, North Carolina, you should definitely hire yourself an experienced DWI lawyer.
At Fanney Law Office, that’s just what we are. I have over 25 years of dealing with DWI cases.
I know all the ins and outs of what happens in the courtroom, what can happen to you.
Here’s a little background. It’s not illegal to drink and drive in North Carolina. If you’re on the roads in Wake County, if you’ve had something to drink, it’s legal up until a point.
The point where it becomes illegal is when you’re over the legal limit, .08, or if the officer thinks you’ve had enough alcohol to cause you to lose normal control of your mental of physical faculties.
That sounds like a lot of legal stuff, so let me break it down just a little more. Sometimes when you get stopped for an alleged DWI, the officer is going to ask you to get out of the car and do certain things.
Do you have to do those tests? No, you don’t. You absolutely have the right to refuse to do any test that the officer asks you to do.
You need to remember, the officer is looking for evidence that can be used to convict you of driving while impaired. Do you take the test or not? Sometimes it’s best to take the test because the evidence would show that you were not impaired.
Other people choose not to take the test, and that too can impact your case, and it might even help you. Please recognize that if you don’t take the test, you’re probably going to be arrested anyway, but you have important legal rights that need to be protected.
After you get arrested, should you take the breath test?
I usually answer it this way. You have a choice.
You have a right not to be tested, but the officer also has a right to get a warrant to have your blood drawn.
Sometimes cases get better when there are no numbers.
You may have to choose between: Do I lose my license for a while for not taking a breath test, or do I increase my chances of getting out of a DWI?
It all depends on perspective, but at Fanney Law Office, we know both of these very carefully.
We work with our clients to make sure they understand that the decisions that they’ve made can and will be used to help them get the best possible result. Come see us at Fanney Law Office.
We have over 25 years in dealing with DWI cases.
We understand what you’re going through. We know how to handle these cases and we’re here to help.